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Thursday, October 11, 2012

A Successful Flop

            Dick Fosbury was not a very good athlete, but he liked sports. He tried several before settling on the high jump in track and field.            
            He tried many of the well-known methods: the western roll, the straddle, and the scissors. At last he did something weird; he approached the bar with great speed and jumped—head facing up and back facing down—with his head leading the way over the bar. Initially, several officials protested, but since Fosbury jumped off of one foot, the jump was ruled legal.
            Great success did not arrive quickly. Fosbury spent years working on his technique. No one—no one—felt inspired to imitate it. Many ridiculed him for it.
            At last, during college, he became one of the top fifty high jumpers in the world. In 1968, he made the U.S. Olympic team. Incredibly, in the Olympic games in Mexico City later that year, Fosbury won the high jump setting an Olympic record of seven feet four inches.
            Little by little, the style caught on. In 1972, Juri Tarmak, won the Olympic gold medal deploying the straddle technique. Since then, every winning jumper has used the Fosbury Flop. For years, it has been the standard in high jumping.
            There are times a leader is so far ahead of the pack that people cannot comprehend where he is going. For God’s leader, it is essential for him to listen to voice of God. 
            This is where Hebrews chapters ten-twelve can encourage. In times when the Christian leader is ahead of everyone else, let him not preoccupy himself with their feedback. Instead, let him play to the audience of God and the cloud of witnesses (those who have gone on before in the faith.) They will cheer him on.

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